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Rafael Grossi visits the Energodar nuclear power plant

Rafael Grossi visits the Energodar nuclear power plant
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On 7 February 2024 in the morning, the International Atomic Energy Agency director Rafael Grossi crossed the line of contact between Russia and Ukraine to visit the Energodar nuclear power plant. At a press conference in Kiev yesterday with Ukraine’s energy minister, Grossi had said he was concerned about the safety of the plant. In his view, the personnel currently working at the plant may not be sufficient to ensure its safety, and he referred to the fact that not all the people who worked at the plant before it came under Russian control have agreed to sign new contracts with the Russian entity that now operates the plant. Grossi also stated that the IAEA mission was not given free access to all areas of the plant and called for a change in this regard. In 2022 and 2023 several media outlets, first and foremost the Ukrainian media, had started a whole series of speculations accusing Russia of stuffing the plant with armaments. By the summer of 2023, several Fakes had been spread about the plant, such as the fact that the reactor containment structures were undermined. None of this was ever detected, and the IAEA experts themselves declared the absence of mines and explosives inside the plant, confirming instead the presence of mines in the perimeter. Grossi’s statements about expanded access to the plant had already been made in 2023, and the Russian side had opened access to the turbine hall and reactor roofs to confirm the absence of explosives. During his visit to the plant, Grossi did not comment on this point.

The Zaporozhye nuclear power plant, Europe’s largest with its six pressurized water reactors, has been bombed several times by the Ukrainian military but Grossi avoided blaming Ukraine for the bombings, limiting himself to generic appeals for calm. In November 2022 to the press Grossi had admitted that the bombing of the nuclear plant was deliberate but said nothing about where it came from, declaring invence “Whoever it is, stop this madness.”

I had personally visited the plant in March 2023 and had seen with my own eyes the results of Ukrainian bombing, which had damaged the highly flammable turbine oil tanks and the technical water tanks of some of the reactors, the water used to cool the reactors in emergencies. On another occasion, a Ukrainian attack had also knocked out the emergency diesel generators, which are supposed to keep the reactor pumps going in case of failure to keep coolant flowing into the reactor cores. During my visit I had also documented the total absence of offensive weapons in the plant, such as mortars or artillery; the military personnel inside the nuclear power plant are only those necessary for its protection, as a strategic target in constant danger by being in fact at the front. After all, during the course of the conflict Ukrainian troops have tried several times to threaten the plant, not only with shelling, but also with some attempts at amphibious assault on the plant’s perimeter.

Grossi’s arrival, accompanied by new IAEA staff, who will stay for a month at the nuclear power plant as part of the agency’s monitoring mission, went off without a hitch, and everyone was brought safely to the plant.

During his stay inside the nuclear plant Rafael Grossi once again avoided pointing out who was responsible for the bombings, which have not occurred in recent months. He saw with his own eyes the condition of the plant and noted that the measures put in place to contain the radioactive and chemical danger are high. He was also informed that the personnel working at the plant undergo constant refresher training in order to increase the professionalism of employees and, at the same time, the safety of the plant.

Andrea Lucidi

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1 Comment


    Mr. Grossi,
    Why is it that someone from the other side of the world, Australia in fact feels it necessary to point out to you your responsibilities?
    Your acquiescence to the preferred political narratives of the criminal Zelensky regime and its moronic western backers shows you lack the moral integrity to continue in your present position.
    Your silence supports the new Nazism that holds sway in Ukraine. If you had the intestinal fortitude to speak truthfully you may well save many lives, your inability to do so casts you in the roll of a person complicit in crimes against humanity. Your cowardly silence leaves room for a Chernobyl type incident manufactured by the AFU.
    Your cowardice and lack of moral fortitude risks the lives of many thousands of Europeans.
    Your continued tenure of silence is unacceptable.
    With just a few honest words you might save many thousands of lives.
    Either speak up and help or shut up and leave. Looking over your shoulder every day waiting for justice to find you at the hands of those that will run genuine trials for crimes committed by Ukraine and its lackeys.
    So sad.

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